Posts Tagged ‘internal revenue service’
Wednesday, February 23rd, 2011
Proponents of the IRS Whistleblower Program can encourage the IRS to adopt a change in an award calculation rule that could increase payments to whistleblowers who report corporate tax underpayments. On January 18, 2011, the Service published a revision to IRC Section 301.7623 that would expand the scope of “collected proceeds” to include “amounts collected prior to receipt of the information if the information provided results in a denial of a claim for refund that otherwise would have been paid; and a reduction of an overpayment credit balance used to satisfy a tax liability incurred because of the information provided.” Those interested in encouraging folks to report corporate tax fraud should write to the Service and ask that the definition be specified to include offsets against NOLs.
So…why the change?
The IRS issued its whistleblower manual in June 2010. The Service adopted a definition of “collected proceeds” that disallowed payments to whistleblowers when the defendant taxpayer satisfied the tax debt by reducing a previous tax credit balance. The new definition expands the term “collected proceeds” to include offsets against credit balances.
Here’s the problem. In the case of large corporations, the reference to “credit balance” is not generally used. Corporations either have a taxable balance, or they are in a Net Operating Loss (NOL) position in which case they don’t pay tax in the current tax period. Instead, the corporations apply a portion or all of the NOL balance to current period taxable income. In addition, corporate credit balances (NOLs) result from many reasons other than tax “overpayment.” For example, a corporation can achieve an NOL balance through the acquisition of another company – and not pay tax for that period.
To boil it down, a whistleblower reports that MegaCorp underpaid $ 100M in taxes for the year 2008. The IRS confirms that MegaCorp underpaid $ 100M in taxes for the year 2008. However, MegaCorp bought MiniCorp and incurred a NOL of $ 100M. MegaCorp says to the IRS, “Okay, just take the $ 100M from the NOL, and we’ll call it even.” The IRS says okay, and the whistleblower gets nothing. That is, nothing under the June 2010 Whistleblower Manual. And, unless NOL offsets are explicitly addressed in the new expanded definition of “collected proceeds,” whistleblowers could be denied rewards for NOL offsets because they are not technically “credit balances.”
Changing the definition of “collected proceeds” to specify inclusion of NOL offsets would incentivize whistleblowers to report tax fraud being committed by large corporations. The IRS is asking for public comment on the rule change. Those who want to comment on the change should send written comments to:
Internal Revenue Service
P.O. Box 7604
Ben Franklin Station
Washington, DC 20044
The IRS will consider timely submissions of written comments that include the original letter and eight copies. Submit your comments by April 1, 2011.
Tags: corporate fraud, fraud reward, internal revenue service, IRS, IRS whistleblower, tax claims, tax evasion, Tax Fraud, tax underpayment, tax whistleblower, whistle blowing, whistleblower award, whistleblowing, whistlebower reward
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